February 17, 2017 § 5 Comments
Another year, another trip to mecca (aka Tucson Gem Shows). Gem hunting in Tucson this year was just as spectacular as ever, and one could not order up better weather! Warm, sunny and perfect for the outdoor venues. Here’s a wrap up of some of my favorite finds:
I have never scored such beautifully mismatched chrysocolla malachite slices; perfectly sized for earrings!
Can never get enough of these hard to find babies! Love beryl with all that trapped gorgeousness.
These babies are often called Mexican Fire Opals. When they have a host matrix, they are similar to Australian Boulder opals, but are referred to as “Cantera” opals.
Tucson is more than just rocks. There are all kinds of exhibits that can literally take your breath away, or move you to tears. This year I came across an exquisite display of lights by Lawrence Stoller. Here’s a photo I snagged off his website:
I was in tears. The artist himself was so moved, that I was moved, he gave me one of his calendars in appreciation! Note to self, stop hiding tears. Check out his gorgeous stuff at his website: http://crystalworks.com/
On the way back home, I crossed a couple of things off my Texas bucket list. First, I lassoed me a pair of cowboys boots.
Second, I took the long way through Big Bend State and National Parks. I figure, if they’re going to build a wall, I wanna see it before they wreck the view.
While picnicking in Big Bend, I fell in love. This is me with Emmy Lou. I wanted to take her home, but then I’d be wanted for dognapping!
So, there you have it. I’ll be posting some finished pieces soon.
Meanwhile, you can still go shopping for some lovely baubles here:http://boutique.ledajewelco.com/
January 17, 2017 § 6 Comments
To say that we are living in “unusual” times would be an understatement. Thankfully, I can tune out, and touch rocks to keep my sanity. Last week I gathered some of my favorite “ruff” stuff, and worked on this talisman.
The combo of raw spessartite garnet (encrusted with pyrite) and the raw orange kyanite (this piece is encrusted with mica) just seemed to kumbaya together, in an earthy but elegant sort of way. They both help with creativity. Adding the grounding black spinel in a pave diamond setting made me feel better too. Pyrite brings self confidence to the mix. Mica has reflective qualities to see flaws without judgement. Ready to layer, with say a deep orange strand of mandarin garnet?
If you’ve read this blog before, you’ll notice that I often refer to my collecting or um, “hoarding” of rocks. This really beautiful hessonite has been in my stash for awhile. I have loved it and gazed upon it for quite some time. It’s ready to go out in the world as a ring. It’s a very unusual cut called “surface cut”, a gorgeous peachy color, and a nice size; over eight carats. Perfect for artists of all kinds: hessonite garnets inspire and bring out the artist even in the seemingly untalented! Hessonite garnets also remove dark thoughts and intensify one’s life.
My other obsession is opal (OK, I have way more than just ONE other obsession). But, I did free a couple from my stash to make these Miss Matched earrings. FYI: Opals offer inspiration and enhance creativity.
Of course, I am gearing up to go get more rock candy in Tucson at the end of January. I’ll post pics of my finds, you can follow me on my Instagram account here: https://www.instagram.com/ledajewelco/
Clicking on a photo will take you to the shop for more info on these pieces.
Happy 2017 to all. It is garnet groove approved!
December 7, 2016 § 1 Comment
Every now and then, I try to do the “right” thing! Get with the program and make a smart business move: like get timely with birthstones. So this month, I made a couple of things with tanzanite and turquoise (December’s birthstones) and then I just made whatever the heck.
I just love inclusions. Dendritic agate = a whole little miniature world in and unto itself.
Speaking of inclusions, in my stash of goodies, I had a couple of very rare paraiba quartz pieces (aka Medusa quartz). This stone comes from a mine in Brazil, that has since closed. The inclusions are called “gilalite”, which is blah blah blah for the mineral that gives the gorgeous blue/green color inclusions.
Then, since we’re still waiting for a frost down here in the Big Easy, I took a couple of icy Herkimer diamonds out, and paired them with some drop dead gorgeous aquamarines. Very cool (pun intended).
Want more birthstone pieces? Let me present an encore viewing of some rocks that a December baby or pretty much anyone else would love (clicking on any image takes you to the shop).
For many people, holidays really are the “blue” season. This is the time of year that loneliness and depression affect people more than at any other time of year. Be kind, you never know who is suffering. Peace.
October 26, 2016 § Leave a comment
October rocks for a lot of reasons. First, my favorite rocks are October’s birthstone: opals and tourmalines. Second, it starts getting cool here in the steamy south, and third, there’s always a mysterious black magical theme going on. There’s more: like we celebrate our anniversary in October, and well, let me shut up and get to the bijoux!
Let’s start with this drop dead gorgeous Australian boulder opal and Oregon sunstone. Sometimes things just make themselves. One morning a loose sunstone dropped right down on the opal I was working on, and that was it.
Stack ‘o black and orange: representing the end of light and the beginning of darkness. Raw black tourmaline crystal and Oregon sunstone stacking rings.
This necklace is perfect for when you’re feeling black and blue. Black tourmaline (aka shorl) is grounding, protective (especially against negative energy), along with an offset aquamarine for peace and courage.
OK. So these earrings consist of Oregon sunstones and black spinels (which are NOT October rocks) but they are probably my favorite of this batch. They work with the black and orange thing going on.
Clicking on a photo brings you to the shop to purchase, and for more info.
October 2, 2016 § 1 Comment
This summer after road tripping to Canada, I made a stop in NYC to get a rock fix. There’s a dealer that gets heart stopping stuff and, let me just say, I have a problem. I am a rock addict. I admit it, and apparently I do nothing (except give in). Here’s a tray with some of my stash. Note the green stuff (beryl) towards the right.
A couple of sights on my way to do the deal.
Then I went home, and got to work.
Sometimes, the simple stuff is all you need.
Click on a photo to take you to the shop for more info.
Hope you had fun on YOUR summer vacation!
July 14, 2016 § 3 Comments
Many years ago, when I first visited Paris, I vowed I would go back and see ALL the art I missed. This year I got to do just that. Well, almost.
It seems water (as in flooding) likes to follow me wherever I go (FYI: I live in New Orleans!) and, so of course a couple of days after I arrived, so did the flood; which in turn closed down The Louvre and some other institutions of art. However, I did manage to tour Musee D’Orsay and L’Orangerie before they had to shut down and move the art. So my dream of seeing Monet’s Lilies did come true! Not to mention all the spots that stayed open throughout the 10 day downpour (Musée Rodin, Musée Picasso, etc). Enough about the art. The real BIG deal of my trip was a visit to a teeny tiny boutique on Rue Saint Honoré, an exquisite jewel box. The shop of one of my idols: Lydia Courteille. Well, let me just say, it was going to be enough for me just to look and swoon, but there SHE was! And so gracious and lovely. I got to touch and pet her work, and talk to the designer herself. Here’s proof:
Ms. Courteille’s work is over the top fantasy. I’m not making this up, check out her stuff here: http://www.lydiacourteille.com/
Well, enough about that Lydia. This Lydia came home inspired by all that pavé, and pulled out a couple of jewel encrusted crystals (pavé created by Mother Nature)!Here’s what they became:
Since I was on an “Orange You Glad” theme, I made this bracelet with a larger spessartite crystal (and a “bestie”)!
Staying on the “orange” theme: gorgeous Mexican fire opal (love the spots).
Clicking on an image will take you to the shop for more info. While you’re at it, you can check out some of the other Beautiful Blondes, including some wonderful “redhead edition” pieces here: http://boutique.ledajewelco.com/collections/beautiful-blondes
Hope everyone is having fun in the sun and enjoying summer. I am still dreaming of Paris!
May 10, 2016 § Leave a comment
We are gathered here today
2 get through this thing called life
You could practically feel everyone’s hearts breaking last month, when the shocking news of Prince’s death hit the news. We have lost so many talents this year already: David Bowie, Glenn Frey, Merle Haggard, Keith Emerson.
Good grief – it’s all too much.
Whenever I don’t know how to handle a loss, I play with my rocks for therapy. This time they are purple. For the “Her Purpleness” jewelry collection, my tribute to His Purpleness.
You can check out these and other “Her Purpleness” pieces here: http://boutique.ledajewelco.com/collections/her-purpleness
“There are those who do not realize that one day we all must die. But those who do realize this settle their quarrels”. Buddhist teaching.